Police appeals after OAP bag snatches

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TWO women pensioners had their handbags snatched in violent incidents in Leigh and Atherton.

A woman was pushed to the floor and had her handbag ripped from her possession during a robbery in Leigh.

The 69-year-old woman was robbed on Eldon Street, Leigh, at about 3.50pm on Thursday 20 December 2012.

She was walking along the road when she was grabbed from behind by the thief, who initially attempted to pull the victim’s handbag away from her arm. However, when the woman put up a struggle the offender resorted to pushing her over to steal the handbag, which he did.

As a result, the woman suffered minor bruising to her arms and legs and was left shaken up following her ordeal.

Cash and credit cards were in the black leather bag that was stolen.

The offender is described as being white, about 15-years-old, 5ft 4in tall, of a slim build and wearing a dark hooded top with the hood pulled up.

It is believed he got out of a bright blue Vauxhall Corsa, said to be a new model, before the incident and then got into the same car after he had robbed the woman. The car then drove off towards Wigan Road, Leigh.

The last three digits of the car were said to be MLG.

Police are now appealing to anyone who has information to come forward.

Police Constable John Catterall said: “The thief is clearly a desperate individual who has caused a lone, elderly woman immeasurable distress.

“From the description we have, it is possible this is a teenager who needed cash but to target a woman in this manner is a cowardly and despicable act. As a result, the woman has been left with not just bruising but a great deal of emotional upset. No-one should be subjected to such an ordeal.

“We need to find the offender so I would appeal to anyone who witnessed the incident, or perhaps has information about what happened, to call us.

“Similarly, I would ask that if anyone saw this bright blue Corsa in the vicinity at around the time of the robbery, or driving at high speeds in the local area, that they contact us.”

Anyone with information should call police on 101 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

The second incident occurred in Atherton when a pensioner was knocked to the ground by a robber.

The 77-yar-old woman was walking along Tyldesley Road, Atherton, near to the Atherton Arms pub when she was approached from behind.

The offender hit the woman in the shoulder, causing her to fall to the ground.

He then stole her black leather Kendals handbag containing a maroon purse and gloves and ran off towards Thomas Street, Atherton.

The robber is described as about 5ft 5in tall, of slim build and was wearing a ‘beanie’ hat and a dark coloured jacket.

The victim suffered minor injuries in the incident at about 10.45am on Sunday, December 30.

PC Steve Wooldridge, from the Volume Crime Team, said: “The contents of the bag will be of little worth to the offender but the consequences to the victim of being robbed like this are significant.

“This man’s actions were nothing short of desperate and I want anyone who saw anything or knows who is responsible to call me.”

Anyone with information is asked to call police on 0161 856 5309 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.